UNISONActive is an unofficial blog produced by UNISON activists for UNISON activists. Bringing news, briefings and events from a progressive left perspective.

Friday, 24 February 2012

NHS Bill - its essence is to promote competition, stupid!

The Guardian reports that the deluded. Liberal Democrat health front bench in the Lords has 'tabled a series of amendments to the health bill, designed to constrain competition and maintain regulation over foundation trusts' http://m.guardian.co.uk/politics/2012/feb/23/lib-dem-peers-amendments-health-bill-lords?cat=politics&type=article

Anyone under illusions that the raison d'etre of the Bill is anything other than to promote competition and lever in private companies into the NHS would be wise to read the recent FT article by former New Labour adviser Professor Julian Le Grand and Zack Cooper of LSE: 'The turbulent rollout of the reforms has created room for critics to make unsupported claims about the corrosive consequences of competition and raise false alarms about privatisation. These dead-end debates will not improve the NHS. We are now at a point where the health secretary’s proposals are likely to be emasculated, if they survive at all. If they are cut back, ironically, it seems most likely that competition between hospitals, one of the elements of Mr Lansley’s proposals with a robust evidence base and the one most likely to improve patient care, is also the one most likely to be left on the cutting room floor. This would be a profound mistake.' http://m.ft.com/cms/s/0/5a996db2-5c93-11e1-8f1f-00144feabdc0.html

No amount of window dressing by the Liberal Democrats can alter the fact that the Bill will destroy the NHS and that's why it must be withdrawn in its entirety.